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VP-finance talks money
By Paul-Mark Rendon
University Students' Council VP-finance Derrick Taub was the bearer of both good and bad news at the USC meeting last night.
In his vice-presidential report to council, Taub presented a mid-year unaudited financial review which discussed the first term's ups and downs. Among the positives, he listed retail service operations, such as Inprint and the Pit Stop, along with media such as The Gazette's advertising operations, as pulling their financial weight.
"What's really contributed in the past to the USC's losses has been the operations," Taub said, adding although there were significant improvements in most departments, there were also several problem areas.
"The ones that are the furthest from their projections are the Wave and the [University Community Centre] flexible daycare," he said.
The Wave, which was noted as being close to $95,000 over budget in cash expenditures was one of the major areas in which Taub said more attention was necessary. "I don't think anybody should expect the Wave to make it's projections this year or even come close to it," he said.
However Taub was quick to note the bar and restaurant was experiencing a new organizational system. "This year's been a turnaround year for the Wave. There's new management and the first semester was a chance for the new management to figure out how the Wave operates," he said, adding the Spoke, also under USC operation, had similar financial problems in 1991, but was turned around.
King's College councillor Mike Werenich raised his concerns over a possible increase in student fees if the USC budget was not balanced come the year's end.
But Taub said there were no plans for an increase to student fees and projected by year's end, the budget would come close to breaking even or be slightly over budget.
Rory Capern, representative for Western's Richard Ivey School of Business, was also concerned the USC would find its way to a losing financial record. "We are consistently losing money. Were there any considerations into outsourcing entirely different businesses [into problem areas]?" he asked.
Taub said there were no specific plans, but he would be busy working with the finance committee to come up with possible solutions.
He said the mid-year report, which had not been made to USC's in years past was necessary to keep the council up to speed on the USCs financial status and he was prompted to make the presentation because he believed councillors were not getting enough feedback throughout the year.
"I felt that there were important issues and a lot of significant improvement that I think council should be aware of as well," he said. "I think the general feeling among councillors last year was that there wasn't enough presented."